Allston based indie band The Symptoms first embedded themselves in my playlist last summer with the release of the experimental trip-pop gem “Don’t Leave.” Around that time, the band’s principal songwriters Ben Berners-Lee, Drew Smith, and James Fraser left behind their Lexington High origins and relocated to the glorious pastures of Allston, planting the seeds of a new, more cerebral sound with their The World & Its Mistress EP.
Now the Symptoms return with a new follow-up EP, Contrasts,, recorded in an Allston bedroom over a six-month period that sandwiched their inclusion in January’s Class of 2013 Best New Bands feature in the since-departed Boston Phoenix.
“It was born from a set of seven basic sketches named in chronology (first, second, etc.),” says Fraser. “The chronological numbering is marked on the back album-cover… lyrically the album focuses largely on the idea of loneliness — also time spent in solitude, solipsism, and hiding.”
The EP’s first single, “All In All (Alone),” is a textured, disaffected ballad that sets the tone for the rest of Contrasts, which will be in full live display Tuesday, May 14, when the Symptoms release the EP at Great Scott in Allston. The video above, proudly premiered by Vanyaland, shows a series of collage-like images that reflect the mental trip of the Symptoms’ sound, and stark outlook of much of their music.